02.02.2013 – 05.05.2013
The Plantin-Moretus Museum exhibited its finest illuminated manuscripts from February to May 2013. These hand-written texts on parchment with their colourful initials and subtle marginal decoration are an absolute feast for the eyes.
The exotic Middle Ages
Christophe Plantin began collecting Biblical and classical texts in the 16th century. A century later, beautiful Bibles, missals and breviaries from all over Europe were being added to the collection.
In the late 18th century, the last generation of the Moretus family added the crowning glory. From around this time, illuminated manuscripts began to be seen as exquisite works of art from a distant and exotic medieval past. At the same time, parchment folios were being reused as end leaves or covers for books.
The exhibition The Magnificent Middle Ages featured 36 striking examples of book illumination. They were selected by the Plantin-Moretus Museum and Illuminare, the Centre for the Study of Medieval Art (KU Leuven).